Lynx that was roaming Long Island captured
NEW YORK - The search is over for a lynx that was on the loose on Long Island. The Suffolk County police caught the big cat and brought it to the Strong Island Animal Rescue League. It is being checked out at the Sweetbriar Nature Center.
Officials say a call came in early Friday morning after the wild cat jutted in front of a car in Central Islip - not far from where it was originally spotted.
"Patrol officers who responded, were able to locate it, corner it, and kept it there," said Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone.
ESU officers used a catch pole to hold it down in order to safely tranquilize and transport the cat.
"Nobody got hurt," said Frankie Floridia with Strong Island Animal Rescue. "The animal is ok. That’s winning."
Credit: Sweetbriar Nature Center
The lynx is said to be about a year old, 40 lbs or similar to a size of a lab. It’ll undergo a full exam. Arrangements are already being discussed for a permanent home.
The animal had previously stopped by Diane Huwer’s home in West Islip early Tuesday morning.
He was outside to feed the feral cats she cares for.
"My first thought, it was a lion," she said. "I put the food down and that’s when I saw him sitting like a statue."
Diane compared the fuzzy invader to a cat on steroids and stood in shock as Lightning, her pet cat inside, started to growl.
She says the exotic animal didn’t care for the cat food and looked like he hadn’t eaten in a while.
Judging by its docile behavior, officials believe the cat seems to be somebody’s illegal pet.
Frankie Floridia with Strong Island Animal Rescue League had reports of other sightings before the lynx was captured.
"If it was legal they would’ve reported it missing by now," Floridia said.
Officials who say wild cats are illegal in New York have already started looking into where it came from.
Anyone who may have an illegal animal can contact the DEC or SPCA and surrender it without facing any consequences. As for the owner of the lynx - he or she can be charged with a misdemeanor - punishable by up to a year in jail and fines of up to $1000. Anyone with information can call the DEC - 631-444-0250.